The Anti-Sitcom

Joseph Winkler praises It’s Always Sunny as the fun, nasty antidote to the bright sincerity of most other shows, such as “Parks and Recreation, Modern Family, Raising Hope, and even 30 Rock”:

[If] any sin can be said to exist in the amoral world of It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, it is the sin of boredom, which is perhaps its most scathing satire and commentary in the world of sitcoms. A sitcom essentially takes life situations and makes them less boring through unlikely, quirky, and slightly absurd twists. Something always happens in a sitcom — someone gets sick, or a miscommunication causes problems — but there is always a resolution, and in hindsight, the conflict was wholly innocuous. Sitcoms often try to depict TV life as a considerably less boring version of our lives, but that their reach is so limited often makes the shows boring in of themselves. (A county fair gone awry, Tracy Jordan is acting up again!). That our sitcoms, embroidered versions of our lives, start to feel boring is a testament to the prevalent sterility and innocuousness of our daily lives (Wake up, go to work, come home, family time, watch TV, et cetera). It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, if only for a mere twenty-two minutes a week, gives us a chance to enter a world without stakes; their idle schemes are the elixir for our idle generation.